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Poster: grendelschoice Date: Mar 2, 2013 3:16pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Best of 1978

Figured I'd follow up the recent Best of '77 discussion with the next logical step...this year IMO is a lot easier to choose a Top 10 from than '77. '78 really intrigues me b/c it seems after the precision of 1977 and so many "Just Exactly Perfect" kind of shows, the band seemed unsure where to take it to next, and the result was a general loss of the "pristine" precision exemplified by May '77 in exchange for a harder-driving rock and roll edge that often brought more power than some '77 shows, but also left a lot of sloppiness in its wake. Still, there are some real gems in this year, starting with:

1/22/78 While I still say the "St Stephen" from this show is overrated (compare its execution with, say, 10/29/77), the "Close Encounters" theme IS wicked cool and this show also has a Top 3 all-time "Terrapin." Very very good start to the year. http://archive.org/details/gd1978-01-22.sbd.miller.110632.flac16

2/3/78 and
2/5/78 (DP Vol. 18) Latvala was right. Unreal pairing of "Estimated>Eyes" in 2/3 and one of the indisputably great "Scarlet>Fires" on 2/5, among many other gems.

4/8/78 April is to 1978 what May was to 1977, and this show is the under-the-radar best of the month. Killer version of "Samson" and a "Scarlet>Fire", "Estimated>Eyes" double pairing that'll knock your socks off. http://archive.org/details/gd1978-04-08.sbd.miller.83716.sbeok.flac16

4/12/78 Come for the "Row Jimmy" (only 3/20/77 tops it), and stay for the encore--an all-time best-ever nominee 'US Blues". http://archive.org/details/gd1978-04-12.sbd.miller.106985.flac16

4/16/78 A show as renowned for the quality of the SBD (Bless you, Betty) as it is for the show, which is spectacular. Especially great space>drums>IKO--possibly the best of the early versions. http://archive.org/details/gd1978-04-16.sbd.cantor.motb.81457.sbeok.flac16

4/24/78 OK, one more nod to April before we move on. Another big-time "Scarlet>Fire" (Jerry croons "let it burn, let it burn"), and how can anyone resist the "Stayin' Alive" tease prior to a ridiculously hot "MAMU>BigRiver"?
http://archive.org/details/gd1978-04-24.sbd.miller.97543.sbeok.flac16

7/8/78 Best Red Rocks show ever nominee. 2nd set: "Ship", "Estimated>Other One">"Eyes" AND "Wharf Rat">"Franklin's Tower." Mercy! http://archive.org/details/gd1978-07-08.sbd.miller.106070.flac16

10/21/78 Can a show make a best-of list based on ONE song? No, but the "Stella Blue" from this show comes real close. Great "Mojo workin'" jam in a pretty fat 2nd set as well.

12/31/78 Farewell to Winterland. Not just one of the best of 1978, I would argue one of the best of all time. They packed everything but the kitchen sink into this show and the "Dark Star">"Other One">Wharf Rat">"St. Stephen" Good Lovin'" to say goodbye to the old rink is one of the most grossly and unfairly underrated 2nd set jams in Dead history.


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Poster: snori Date: Mar 4, 2013 12:44pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978

Have to agree with you on April 78 - some real passion in those shows. My favourite Peggy-O resides in 4/16. On balance I prefer early 78 to later (If that doesn't make me sound like WT), and I think something is missing post Egypt that isn't helped by Ollin Arageed.

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Poster: stratocaster Date: Mar 2, 2013 4:42pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978

spot on list...would agree to include 11-20, perhaps 11-24 as well and 01-15 maybe...in agreement on 12-31-1978...07-08 is best show of the year...10-21 is phenomenal, 10-17 deserves honorable mention, if not for the World to Give, than for Banjo Lady...love 78

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Poster: jerlouvis Date: Mar 2, 2013 5:49pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978

http://archive.org/details/gd1978-04-22.sonyECM250.walker-scotton.miller.92808.flac16

Candyman
Jack Straw
It Must HAve Been the Roses
Estimated -> Eyes
Wharf Rat -> Sugar Magnolia

http://archive.org/details/gd1978-12-16.sonyecm250-no-dolby.walker-scotton.miller.82212.sbeok.flac16

Sugaree
Candyman
Big River
Scarlet ->Fire
Other One -> Wharf Rat

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Poster: billydlions Date: Mar 2, 2013 4:09pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978

We share a lot more shows from 1978 than 1977 on our list. I would add 11/20/78, 12/16/78 and 12/28/78 to your list and delete 10/21, 4/12 and 4/16.

12/28 is a great show that no one ever mentions! It could use a little Charlie Miller magic though.

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Poster: snow_and_rain Date: Mar 2, 2013 6:32pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978

1978 – 1/22/78, 2/5/78, 4/8/78, 4/16/78, 4/24/78, 5/7/78, 5/16/78, 6/4/78, 7/8/78, 10/22/78, 11/18/78, 11/20/78, 12/16/78, 12/19/78, 12/28/78, 12/30/78, 12/31/78

Some general agreement there. I'm a little more inclined toward the end of the year shows. No 12/28? No 12/30? With respect to 1/22/78, you didn't mention that it has one of the best ever versions of Jack Straw. Well, I think so anyway.

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Poster: Jack o' Roses Date: Mar 4, 2013 8:14am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978

I agree with 12/19 & 12/30 and the end of the year in general...

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Poster: grendelschoice Date: Mar 2, 2013 6:55pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978

Will have to check out 11/20 as a number of folks have mentioned this as an oversight...must admit i'm not real familiar w/that show...will listen again to 12/28 also.

I didn't include 12/16 mostly b/c i'm a SBD snob...but I should judge the show on its merits...

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Poster: snow_and_rain Date: Mar 4, 2013 8:05am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978 - 12/16/78

12/16/78 is a pretty fantastic AUD, by the way. Make sure you listen past the first ten seconds or so. The quality improves big time. It's really kind of hard to believe that this is an AUD. This also features one of the best Scarlet> Fires that I know and some of the most tasteful slide work I've ever heard from Weir.

Take it from this reviewer:

Reviewer: doug_the_dude - December 16, 2012
Subject: --
Another example of how an AUD can convert even the most ardent of SBD snobs (myself included!) - this is easily of the best recordings of '78.

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Poster: RJ_Squirrel Date: Mar 3, 2013 8:52pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Best of 1978

Funny, I just listened to 11/20 for the first time yesterday.
The second set really is greater than the sum of its parts.